Pakistan had initially claimed that they had two Indian pilots in custody. Later, they backtracked from their initial statement and confirmed that they had the custody of only one Indian pilot.
Earlier today, news agency ANI had released the picture of the downed Pakistani F16 jet. Incidentally, the same picture was being circulated as a photograph of the downed Indian jet, however, analysis by IAF officers has confirmed that it is actually an F16, ANI has reported.
The image of the jet which is now reported to be one of Pakistan’s F16 provides some insight into how the Pakistanis came to believe that they had two Indian pilots under custody. As many on social media have pointed out, it appears that the Pakistanis were under the impression that they had managed to down two Indian jets and in the process, mistook one of their own pilots for an Indian.
It is indeed the F-16 which was shot down yesterday. The pilot is in hospital. This was the confusion which led @ImranKhanPTI and @OfficialDGISPR to claim that they had shot two jets and captured two pilots. They later retracted. The F16 pilot is at the army hospital. https://t.co/dqn4wcHkEW
— Raj Shekhar Jha (@rajshekharTOI) February 28, 2019
The F16 pilot, who the Pakistan Army who appears to have been mistaken for an Indian, is believed to be receiving treatment at one of the Army hospitals in Pakistan.
The Pakistanis, meanwhile, are still busy peddling the ‘2 Indian jets downed’ theory despite the evidence which suggests that of the two jets downed, one of them was a Pakistani F16.
AJK minister lauds PAF timely action of shooting down 2 Indian jets https://t.co/FCeNsdNHXQ
— Times of lsIamabad (@TimesofIslambad) February 28, 2019
Pakistani social media has been busy exaggerating the achievements of its Army since yesterday. Initially, it was also claimed that their Air Force had played a part in the helicopter crash at Budgam district in J&K. It appeared extremely far-fetched even then and later, even the Pakistani Army stated profusely that they had nothing to do with it.